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BISHKEK -- The Kyrgyz parliament has voted to dismiss a veteran human rights defender from the post of ombudsman.

Lawmakers voted overwhelmingly to remove Tursunbek Akun after a parliamentary commission requested his dismissal.

Commission members claimed Akun had been involved in the illegal early release of reputed criminal boss Aziz Batukaev from jail in April.

The commission also alleges financial irregularities in the ombudsman's office.

Akun was hospitalized on June 27 after reportedly fainting during a break in the parliamentary session.

Before being nominated to the ombudsman's post by former Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiev in February 2008, Akun had led the presidential Commission for Human Rights.
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